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Community Tasting Notes (average 116 notes) - and median of 93 pts. in hiding notes with no text
| ||Tasted by Thilo on 11/23/2014 flawed bottle: Orange color. Madeirized nose. Oxidized. (976 views)|
| ||Tasted by mouton45 on 6/17/2014 & rated 92 points: Served as the third white at last night's wine group dinner at Two Chefs. Delicious! Unanimous hit, though no one deduced it was from Aussieland. Rich, definitely not typical Cali tropical fruits. Great structure and flavor profile. My last bottle of the 2002, alas. I do love Margaret River chards. Time to move on to the next vintage (1750 views)|
| ||Tasted by thomaskeil on 12/16/2013 & rated 91 points: Light golden color. Tropical fruits, vanilla, floral, lime on nose. Weighty fruit on entry, but lightens up by mid palate with acidity and mineral streak kicking in. Finishes with a creaminess over the mineral. Matched to a rich pan-fried fish with parsnips and red pepper/sumac coulis. (2703 views)|
| ||Tasted by RGCM Gananda on 11/29/2013 & rated 93 points: Pear and tropical fruits on the nose. A wide variety of tropical fruits including guava at first, then adding in a berry component and finishing with pear, lime and mineral – very good complexity. Incredible richness and depth overall. Oak and acidity have nearly totally integrated with the wine leaving a creamy richness on the finish. This wine is drinking at peak and should be drunk in the next year. (2570 views)|
| ||Tasted by email@example.com on 11/26/2013 & rated 90 points: Past it's prime. (2582 views)|
| ||Tasted by texaswinelover on 11/24/2013: Score reserved only because I have no experience with Aussie chard this old.|
Beautiful golden color.
This wine was beautifully developed. Nutty as described by others. Almost oxidized in character though perfectly stored since release. Acidity remained on finish with fairly bright lemony notes. A pleasure to drink. Glad I held this. (2052 views)
| ||Tasted by Ben Christiansen on 7/20/2013: A vast and powerful Art Series. Harmonious, deep, a finish that last minutes. A dream wine. And in prime form. It will go longer but this is the tops. What a pleasure to even having met you, let alone known you. (I would agree with the CT drink dates here). (2400 views)|
| ||Tasted by NY Wino on 6/29/2013 flawed bottle: So bummed...this was dead (1551 views)|
| ||Tasted by Jeremy Holmes on 3/12/2013: Just on that cusp of drinking really well and falling into too much nuttiness territory. There are grilled nuts, ripe peaches and tangerines. It is full and rich with some honeyed development. Acidity is beginning to fold into the wine and it has good length. (2520 views)|
| ||Tasted by Thilo on 2/15/2013 & rated 92 points: Bright yellow/chartreuse color after 10 years! Nose shows lemon oil, oak, and spice. On the palate, the attack begins with lemon but is quickly framed by significant oak. The weight of the wine handles the oak well, but the fruit is starting to fade. A good dose of acidity keeps it all in check. Quite enjoyable. Still my favorite new world chardonnay. (2620 views)|
| ||Tasted by 1961Vintage on 2/3/2013 & rated 96 points: Still rockin! Classic burgundian nose...Even if you have to stand on your head to drink it. Great mouthfeel and a finish that went way beyond the final Super Bowl gun (2653 views)|
| ||Tasted by hehimm on 10/21/2012 & rated 96 points: Ditto my notes from 10/24/2010 and tantotinto's notes from 9/19/12. If anything it is even better now. Deep, deep golden yellow. Concentrated aromas of citrus, green apple, grapefruit and much more. Lots of flavor(s) including honey. Very much in harmony/balance with lively acidity. The finish keep going. Years to go. Nice that I have 8 left. (2997 views)|
| ||Tasted by tantotinto on 9/19/2012 & rated 94 points: Golden yellow color. Great nose of citrus, wet rocks and sea air. Full and creamy texture. Meyer lemon, cream, and pear with a touch of honey and spice in the long finish. Juicy, luscious and concentrated and kept lively by perfectly balancing acidity. This is easily one of the best Chardonnays that I have tasted. (3120 views)|
| ||Tasted by firstname.lastname@example.org on 9/2/2012 & rated 93 points: Still hitting on all cylinders. The acidity keeps it going endlessly! (2538 views)|
| ||Tasted by Happy Sommelier on 8/10/2012 & rated 95 points: Another consistent super high quality Chardonnay from Leeuwin Estate. The 2002 is amazing new world Chardonnay that exhibits a perfect balance of fruit, acidity and oak. This full bodied Chardonnay is a bit different from previous vintages but is equally amazing in quality. Rather than the standard lemon pineapple "tropical" flavours of previous vintages I find pear and apple showing more prominently. The wine is without any fault and can only be described as the perfect new world Chardonnay. In the mouth we can also experience tertiary qualities of honey and a bouquet of flowers. Superb balance and a very long finish of citrus fruit with a smoky like characteristic. (853 views)|
| ||Tasted by AlanM68 on 7/17/2012 & rated 90 points: Agree with MrBuzz below. A case of this leads to some duds. This was one of them. Lacked the exotic tropical fruit that I am used to, even at this age (the 2001 is still going strong) but it's still good and compared well against an 02 leflaive clavoillon. Each to their own of course. (2585 views)|
| ||Tasted by Ben Christiansen on 6/22/2012: This was sensational. Less of the very exuberant aromatics of a young Art Series, meaning less lemon and tropical fruit, more pear and cream. And then on the palate -- sizzle. The cream and this intense minerality sparked of by juicy, tangy acidity. The finish was incredible. Really hit its stride about four hours after being open. While I love it right now, and think it must be at its peak, it seems like it could keep going further. I believe I have two more bottles, we shall see. (2723 views)|
| ||Tasted by CamWheeler on 6/18/2012 & rated 92 points: Toasty oak with honey and spice on the nose. Rich and creamy palate. Very good acid to cut through the richness. Drinking nicely now but will get better. (1103 views)|
| ||Tasted by Primordialsoup on 4/14/2012 & rated 94 points: Faint citrus and lime scents, leading to honeysuckle, pear, and tropical palate with continuing to develop dry nut-ish finish. It's all there and intact. Superb. (2254 views)|
| ||Tasted by hpchew7 on 4/5/2012 & rated 95 points: Beautiful. Still fresh after 10 years. Plenty of life left in it. (2254 views)|
| ||Tasted by Mrbuzz on 1/31/2012 & rated 95 points: Almost done with a case purchased around release...some duds..but for the most part, killer bottles! This one is another killer bottle! Brilliant yellow, green metallic color...wonderful nose of lemons, stones, buttered honeycomb, grilled pineapple with caramel. Fresh and crisp as can be in the mouth....loaded with tropical fruits, as well as citrusy lemon, and sweet grapefruit. Lots of crushed minerals...salted caramel, exotic wood...but very bright and alive. Still some bitters on the finish...but all in all, drinking absolutely wonderful right now! A Coche-Dury down under! (2487 views)|
| ||Tasted by email@example.com on 11/26/2011 & rated 94 points: My last 02. Great as always. On to the 04's. (2889 views)|
| ||Tasted by wine-strategies on 8/12/2011 flawed bottle: Not going to rate as this was suffering from some premature oxidation. Some lovely aromas were to be found, but they were short lived. The fruit struggled to express itself. Very unfortunate, but it happens. This was purchased on release, stored well and the cork was in excellent condition. I'll check on my '04s before year's end to see how they're coming along. The standout feature here was the color, deep gold, but not much else. (3776 views)|
| ||Tasted by firstname.lastname@example.org on 8/6/2011 & rated 94 points: Great again. A cut above the 03 Peter Michael Belle Cote. (3672 views)|
| ||Tasted by wine-strategies on 7/28/2011 & rated 92 points: PnP at Yanni's in Poway, CA. It's been sometime since I've tried this wine, having forgotten just how ripe and rich (yet balanced, if such a thing is possible) it is. Plenty of ripe, honey-draped orchard fruits, with creamy malo and stone fruit notes rounding out the profile. On the palate, it comes across Kistler-esque - in your face, with no mistaking the intention. Still, the purity of fruit can not be ignored, nor can the streak of natural acidity that deftly ties everything together. It's been 5 days and I swear I still have the quince notes in the back of my mind. Drink thru 2016, 14,5% abv (3880 views)|
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Leeuwin Estate Producer web site
Leeuwin Estate, one of the founding wineries of the now famous Margaret River district, consistently produces wines that rank with the world's finest.
In 1972, following an extensive search for the area most suitable to produce the best varietal wines in Australia, legendary American winemaker, Robert Mondavi, identified the future site of the Leeuwin vineyard.
Originally a cattle farm, Leeuwin Estate evolved, under the direction of Denis and Tricia Horgan, with Robert Mondavi acting as consultant and mentor.
A nursery was planted in 1974 and the initial vineyards were deep-ploughed, deep-ripped, emptied of stone, planned, pegged, measured, marked and eventually planted by hand over a five year period from 1975.
Featuring state-of-the art facilities, the winery building was opened in 1978, celebrating with a trial vintage. Leeuwin enjoyed its first commercial vintage in 1979, and was thrust into the international spotlight when Decanter Magazine gave its highest recommendation to the 1980 "Art Series" Chardonnay in an international blind tasting.
Maintaining a team of highly skilled and dedicated winemakers, and now under the direction of two generations of the founding family, Leeuwin now exports to over 30 countries.
Leeuwin Estate, an iconic producer of premium wines made from grapes grown in the Margaret River region of Western Australia, recognises that its environmental responsibilities are of significant importance to its staff, suppliers, customers and the local community.
As a family business the Estate is committed to managing the environmental effects of its operations through responsible stewardship, with the aim of maintaining a sustainable environment for future generations. To accomplish these goals Leeuwin Estate applies best practice standards for environmental management in all facets of the business.
The Margaret River district features pristine white sandy beaches, spectacular coastline and amazing surf. It is surrounded by majestic karri forests, is nestled within picturesque farmland and enjoys a balmy temperate climate.
Complemented by fine restaurants, art galleries and boutique luxury accommodation, Margaret River has spawned one of the world's most dynamic and innovative wine tourism industries.
Located in the South West of Western Australia, approximately 280 km south of Perth, Leeuwin Estate enjoys a unique environment that is highly complementary to the production of high quality varietal wines.
Less than 6 km from the ocean, Leeuwin Estate is approximately midway between Cape Naturaliste to the north and Cape Leeuwin, Australia’s most southwesterly point.
The area between Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin is one of the most ancient parts of the world. It became isolated when the continental crust split leaving a 100 km sedimentary basin between it and the mainland. Today the basin contains some of the world’s largest mineral sand deposits.
This granitic island, where the Leeuwin vineyard is located, has weathered over millions of years and now provides us as vignerons with the ancient free draining gravel soils, which are highly complementary to the culture of the vine, as well as promoting great finesse in the wine.
Leeuwin’s rainfall is dictated by the “Roaring 40’s” which move north in our winter and south in our summer, with the oscillation of the earth. 85% of rainfall is therefore received during the cooler six months.
With oceans on three sides only changing water temperature by two degrees between summer and winter, the district has its own microclimate. Leeuwin’s vineyards are therefore protected from extremes of temperature and are frost-free during the critical spring growing period.
The mean daily maximum and minimum temperatures during the summer season are very similar to those of Bordeaux. The significant difference however is that our season opens slightly earlier and closes slightly later, providing us with greater latitude to ripen our fruit, whilst also accommodating earlier ripening varieties such as Chardonnay.
In all, the weather conditions in an “average” year in Margaret River equate to those that Bordeaux only enjoys occasionally in “great” years.
From Fruit to Wine
Great wines are born in great vineyards, and at Leeuwin the viticulturist and winemaker work hand-in-hand throughout the entire winemaking process, combining their skills to create wines of distinction.
Careful study, and the eventual grafting of some vines has revealed the best varieties for the Leeuwin vineyard to be Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon; Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Shiraz make up the diversity of the vineyard, which also incorporates smaller plantings of varieties utilised for blending.
Enjoying such an isolated and pristine natural environment, the emphasis of Leeuwin's viticultural practice is minimal interventionist. Working with the environment and through skilled vineyard management, Leeuwin is able to produce fine fruit in an environmentally friendly manner.
Vineyards are kept balanced with the yearly environmental conditions. With the emphasis on quality rather than quantity, yields at Leeuwin are kept low.
Boasting one of the most modern wineries in the Southern hemisphere, Leeuwin Estate offers its winemakers all the advantages of new age technology.
Winemaking however is an art as well as a science, and it is here where the skills of the winemaker are carefully combined with technology to produce the wines that have been so highly acclaimed.
Broadly following European winemaking techniques, Leeuwin is concentrating on achieving complexity, balance and longevity in its wines through a blend of modern and traditional methods.
Temperature controlled stainless steel tanks, two Bucher Pneumatic presses, and a cellar of imported French oak barrels, are at the disposal of the winemaker to ensure that the fruit is transformed into the intended style of wine.
Leeuwin Estate Wines
Leeuwin Estate releases its wines under four labels, the Art Series, Prelude Vineyards and Siblings. Whilst the wines in each portfolio follow different lives, they all share a place amongst the great wines of Australia, receiving much international acclaim and attention.
The “Art Series” represents Leeuwin’s finest wines from each vintage. The winemakers have always selected the optimum fruit, transforming it into Leeuwin’s highest quality and age-worthy wines. They are identified with paintings commissioned from leading contemporary Australian Artists.
Whilst "Art Series" wines are designed to age and ultimately to be the most opulent, "Prelude Vineyards" wines are made from fruit producing the most readily expressive wines, with the objective that they will drink well soon after release. A Chardonnay and a Cabernet Merlot are released under this label. During the course of assessing fruit from the vineyards, the winemakers have found that certain blocks, and even certain rows in particular blocks, tend to consistently produce fruit best suited to either of the two styles of Cabernet and Chardonnay they make.
The "Siblings" label represents wines intended for fresh early drinking. As a family business, this label celebrates the role the second generation of the Horgan family has played in the ongoing development of Leeuwin Estate.
Chardonnay Chardonnay on Appellation America
Australia Wine Australia (Australian Wine and Brandy Corporation) | Australian Wines (Wikipedia)
Margaret River Margaret River Wine Association